10 Fun Spanish Conjugation Games Guaranteed to Boost Your Fluency
Learning Spanish is fun and exciting; just think of all the places Spanish can take you! However, the emotion dies down a bit when the dreaded grammar drills rear their ugly heads. Nobody likes doing Spanish conjugation exercises, right?
Many books teach Spanish conjugation with lists and rote memorization, which is an ineffective way for children to learn. Kids want to play! Luckily, we’ve listed some of the best Spanish conjugation games available to spruce up your Spanish lessons. Boost your students’ fluency with these 10 awesome Spanish conjugation games!
Fun and Easy is the Name of the Game
Whether you’re a parent looking to engage your child in learning Spanish or a teacher trying to make Spanish verbs fun, these games are sure to be a hit. Each of the following options can be adapted to fit the learner’s needs and adjusted for single or multiple players. Additionally, if you are looking to spice up your Spanish learning as an adult, or have a class of adult students, most of these games are suitable for any age.
Ages: 8 and up
You can’t go wrong with the classics! This simple game can get quite competitive as each team works to win as much money as possible. Jeopardy works well with older students, but if your elementary students understand the concept and can read, this game will be a success with them as well.
How to play: Draw a grid on the board (or a piece of paper) with three to five columns and three to five rows. You determine the size of the board depending on how much time you have and how many people are participating. Give each column a category, such as “Irregular Verbs,” “Pronouns,” “Simple Present,” etc. Then assign a dollar amount to each row: $100, $250, $500, and $1000, for example. You can prepare the questions beforehand or on the spot if you are using this game as a time-filler. Make sure the boxes worth less money have easier questions, and save the difficult verbs and sentences for the high-scoring options.
If you are playing with teams, a fun twist to add is to allow the opposing team to “steal” a question if the current group gets the answer wrong. This creates some fun competition and encourages teamwork.
2. Draw from the Hat
Ages: 12 and up
This is a calm, sit-down game, so it is best for older students. It’s a fun way to end a class or review before a test.
How to play: Cut up pieces of paper and write verbs in their infinitive form on each piece. Put them in a hat (or a bowl, a box, or whatever you have available) and pass it around. Each student draws a verb and conjugates it. To decide which conjugation they will say, there are various options:
- Choose a universal pronoun and tense. For example, everyone has to conjugate the verb the draw in the tú form of the past simple.
- Choose a universal tense and include another container with the pronouns written on pieces of paper. Each student draws from both and combines them to conjugate the verb.
- Include the pronoun with the verb on one piece of paper.
- Expert Mode: Have the students do the complete conjugation for one tense for each verb!
Ages: 8 and up
Levels: Lower-intermediate and up
¡Basta! is the Spanish version of the exciting game, Stop! While this game is an entertaining challenge for all ages (who can read and write), it should not be used with beginners because it requires a solid handle on Spanish vocabulary.
How to play: You can prepare the game on the board, on printouts, or just using a piece of paper. Choose four to six categories (including a verb!) and label the columns with them. Then, give your students a random letter and a set time (30-60 seconds, depending on their skill level) to come up with words for each category that start with the given letter. This game is usually played as a vocabulary exercise, but with the added verb column it can be used as a fun way to practice making sentences.
To add an extra challenge, ask the students to conjugate the verb in a specific tense and connect all the words to make a sentence.
4. Scavenger Hunt
Ages: 3 to 12
If you are looking for games for preschoolers (yes, preschoolers can learn to conjugate verbs!), this is a great one to consider.
How to play: For the youngest learners, place images representing certain verbs around the house or classroom. If you have older students, go ahead and hide pieces of paper with the verbs written on them. The students then must complete the scavenger hunt and find all the hidden verbs. When they find the verb, they come and say the conjugated form of the verb to you. It’s best to start with just one conjugation form at a time for preschoolers so they do not get overwhelmed. For example, with every image they find, they bring it to you and say yo + conjugated verb. With older students, you can write the pronoun on the piece of paper and either have them say the conjugation to you or write it down in their notebook.
For an extra fun step with preschoolers, have a printout with all the verb images on it. Every time they find a verb, have them match it to one on the handout and glue it on top of it.
5. Board Game
Ages: 3 and up
Board games are always enjoyable and competitive! This Spanish conjugation board game can be adapted for a preschool Spanish class or for advanced learners. While it does require some extra prep, once you make it, be sure to laminate the pages so you can use it again and again!
How to play: Create the board game by drawing a path (similar to CandyLand) divided into different spaces. On each landing space, write a pronoun and a verb to be conjugated. You can announce the desired tense before starting, or for advanced classes, include the different tenses on the board. Be sure to add in spaces like “Advance three” or “Lose a Turn.”
For preschoolers: Take it to the floor! Make each space one whole piece of paper. Instead of moving game pieces, the kids will jump from space to space. Additionally, don’t write anything on the pieces of paper; use an image to represent the verb. For the pronouns, you can either use this with only one pronoun at a time or use another image to represent the subject.
Ages: 8 and up
This is a great option for one-on-one Spanish instruction or for a paired activity.
How to play: Take a generic tic-tac-toe board and write verbs and pronouns in each square. Before a player can claim a block, they must conjugate the verb correctly in the given tense. To take this up a notch, make the grid larger, have the students write full sentences, or draw the grid on the floor with chalk/tape for a hands-on game.
Ages: 4 and up
Get those verb images out again! Whether you use images (preschool) or written cards (older students), it’s a good idea to laminate the cards for lasting use.
How to play: With younger students using the image cards, have them say the verb that corresponds to the image and then conjugate it. Depending on what your kids are learning, you can have them use the yo form or encourage them to talk about their classmates (ella corre).
For older kids and adults, it’s best to use the written cards to give them a challenge. You can have them simply conjugate verbs or include them in a full sentence. To make it more difficult (and to get the students up and moving), you can add a twist. Put the cards on the board or wall and have them run back and forth trying to recreate the Spanish conjugation board at their desk by memory. If they are working in groups, have the other students work on conjugating the verbs in the chart.
8. Pass the Ball
Ages: 4 and up
This is a great game to take outside and continue learning while enjoying some fresh air.
How to play: Get a cheap beach ball and separate it into sections with a marker. In each space, write a verb to be conjugated. For those younger learners, tape a picture of the verb to each segment. Then have your students form a circle and toss the ball between you. When someone catches the ball, they need to look where their right thumb has landed and conjugate the verb in that section.
You can also put a Hot Potato twist on this by having the students pass the ball as fast as they can while music is playing. When the music stops, the person who has the ball has to look where their right thumb is and conjugate the corresponding verb.
Ages: 8 and up
If your students are getting antsy, start a game of Spanish conjugation relay!
How to play: Split the students into two teams and have them line up in front of the board. If you want to play this game outside, you can give each team a small whiteboard. Put a small basket with verbs and pronouns written on pieces of paper next to the board. When you say “go,” one person from each team will run to the board and pick a slip of paper and conjugate the verb correctly on the board. It has to be approved by the teacher before the student can run back and tag the next team member. Continue until all the verbs are used up. To make it a bit more challenging, ask the students to write full sentences in Spanish with the verbs.
Ages: 4 and up
This last game is another classic that can be used for all ages. If you want to give the students more incentive, offer small prizes (like candy or cool erasers) to each person who wins a round of bingo.
How to play: You can create the bingo boards yourself with different verbs, or you can ask your students to design their own boards using a list of verbs you provide. Then, make a list of conjugated verbs to call out. The students have to find the infinitive form of the verb on their bingo board and mark it.
For younger learners, use images of verbs. They can even draw the actions in each spot if they want! Call out the infinitive forms, or Spanish conjugations if they are ready, and have them mark off the corresponding image.
Remember, the best way to increase your students’ fluency is by using as much Spanish as possible while playing these games. Encourage them to use some of these key phrases as well:
- Es mi turno – It’s my turn.
- Me toca – It’s my turn.
- ¡Gané! – I won!
- El dado – the die
- Ganar – to win
- Perder – to lose
- El juego – the game
- El equipo – the team
As the instructor, try to include these sentences when explaining and overseeing the games:
- ¡Escuchen! Estas son las instrucciones. – Listen up! Here are the instructions.
- Los voy a dividir en dos equipos. – I’m going to divide you into two teams.
- Lo siento, eso es incorrecto. – I’m sorry, but that is incorrect.
- ¡Exacto! ¡Correcto! ¡Perfecto! – Exactly! Correct! Perfect!
- Y los ganadores son… – And the winners are…
Play to Win
Games are a great way to practice Spanish conjugation, but if you are looking for more tips and ideas on how to teach Spanish, why not try a free trial class with Homeschool Spanish Academy? Our certified teachers can reinforce the Spanish you’re teaching, offer more game ideas, and give your students a little change of scenery. If you are a parent, take classes for yourself to help you better teach your child Spanish! ¡Juguemos y aprendamos español!
Looking for more fun Spanish learning resources? Check out these posts!
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- Ir + a + Infinitive: The Near Future Tense in Spanish - February 26, 2021